Thank you for visiting Ohio.com. We noticed you are using an outdated browser that may not give you the best user experience. We recommend current browser versions of Google’s Chrome, Microsoft’s Edge, Mozilla’s Firefox. For more specific information on how to update your browser --Click Here or visit your browser’s website.
The latest gun control brainstorm from Democrats is a proposal to force gun owners to carry liability insurance or pay a $10,000 fine. This follows a $25 gun tax implemented by Chicago Democrats. With President Obama's gun control measures looking like they will fail to be adopted, Democrats are going to Plan B, which consists of attempts to make gun ownership more expensive and to wage the gun control fight at the state and local level.
The irony of Democrat efforts to make gun ownership more expensive is rich. First of all, such a policy is extremely regressive, meaning the cost burden falls most heavily on those who can least afford it. If you recall, Democrats spent 2012 screaming "racist !!!" at Republicans over voter ID laws. It was the position of Democrats that ID's costing three bucks or so (and in most cases voter ID laws could be complied with for free) was tantamount to voter suppression of minorities. It was a ridiculous assertion, but now Democrats are proposing major regressive cost hikes on guns. By the Democrats' own definition, Democrats are being racist by suppressing the Second Amendment rights of minorities. But I bet you'll never hear about this on the news, and you'll definitely never hear about it on liberal websites.
Liberal Democrats, being the simple, emotion-based creatures they are, are fine with the racist aspects of their gun control proposals, because they believe getting rid of guns will dramatically reduce violent crime and murders. To prove this point, they will cite the low murder rates in gun-banned England compared to the gun-happy United States...and they will ignore the mountain of evidence that runs contrary to their beliefs. The truth is, while the U.S. has the highest gun ownership rates in the world, we do NOT have the highest murder rates in the world. We're not even close to the top. If the guns=murder belief of liberals held true, we should lead the world in murders. According to 2012 United Nations data, the world homicide rate is 6.9 per 100,000 people. In the United States, the rate is 4.8. We are BELOW average, despite the United States leading the world in gun ownership by a wide margin.
One can look solely at North American countries to see the guns=murder contention of liberals is deeply flawed. While Canada has a lower homicide rate (1.6) and gun ownership rate than the USA, Mexican gun ownership rates are half that of Canada, and Mexico's homicide rate is 22.7, nearly five times higher than the USA. The murder rate of all the Central American countries combined is 28.5, and they ALL have lower gun ownership rates than does the USA. Other areas with higher homicide rates and far lower gun ownership rates than the USA are Africa, South America, Eastern Europe, Southeast Asia, and Central Asia. Clearly, there is more to the equation than the simple guns=murder contention of liberals.
Another thing never considered by liberal Democrat gun-banners is the defensive aspect of gun ownership. Following the Newtown massacre, President Obama led the emotional charge against guns by saying if we can "save even one child", we should take the appropriate action to do so. The thing is, NONE of the actions proposed to date by Democrats would have prevented Newtown. None of them. The ONLY proposal that might have stopped Newtown is one presented by the NRA, which would place armed guards in schools.
It would be helpful if we could determine how many defensive (crime-stopping) uses of guns there are compared to offensive (criminal) uses. Unfortunately, it's pretty hard to come up with data, because defensive uses are not tracked. There is a study from the 1990's that found there were 2.5 million incidents in which victims used guns for self-protection, compared to half a million gun crimes. If that study is within light years of being accurate, getting rid of guns would create more victims than it would save (because criminals don't obey gun laws. Law-abiding citizens do obey them).
Next, ask yourself, who needs guns the most for purposes of protection ??? That would be people living in areas with the highest crime rates, correct ??? And the areas with the highest crime rates are the poorer areas. And the poorer areas tend to have more minorities living in them, because minorities are still poorer on average. Now, remember who will be the most affected by the regressive gun cost hikes of the Democrats. That would be, drumroll please, poor people and minorities. Thus, the Democrats are exacerbating a situation where the very people most in need of guns for defense, poor people and minorities, are less able to afford them. The Democrats couldn't be more racist and more indifferent to the plight of the "little guy" if they tried. I'm sure the top 2% can well afford the gun protection the Democrats would place further out of the reach of others.
To the extent the proposals of Democrats attempt to get guns out of the hands of the mentally ill and criminals, such as background checks, I support them. To the extent the proposals of Democrats are thinly veiled attempts to get rid of guns and subvert the Second Amendment, such as the regressive, racist cost hikes, I do not support them.